Is there an open source recruiting platform

Social recruiting: how to choose your best channels (and reach their maximum potential)

Social recruiting (also known as hiring processes or social media recruiting) is one of the most common and popular strategies used by hiring managers today. However, despite its centrality, many recruiters struggle to devote enough time to the multitude of potential social recruiting platforms. The field of social recruiting is becoming increasingly competitive. That is why recruiters and recruiters need to learn how to choose the right communication channels for their company and how to optimize the time required to do so.

What is social recruiting?

Social recruiting is the process of recruiting active and passive candidates through a social media platform. This includes not only the job advertisement, but also the establishment of contact with potential applicants and the development of an employer brand (also called employer brand) on these platforms. In 2017, people around the world spent an average of 135 minutes a day on social media websites. Given the average amount of time spent on social media, this audience is well worth it.

Hiring processes or social media recruiting are particularly popular today because they:

  • are a great way to expand your reach and include passive candidates;
  • are ideally suited to reach specialists and niche candidates;
  • Establish contact and interactions with potential candidates;
  • offer inexpensive (and sometimes free) job postings;
  • and promote employer branding or awareness in your target market.

Despite the popularity of social recruiting, it is not always clear where to reach most applicants and how to use it appropriately. Especially when looking for a specific type of candidate.

Below we provide a comprehensive overview of social recruiting communication channels (including some not-so-obvious channels), what kind of candidates they are suitable for, and give some motivating tips to get the best results in the shortest possible time.


It would be misleading to create a recruiting website guide without mentioning LinkedIn first. LinkedIn is the primary go-to for social media recruiting and to start recruiting for pretty much any type of position you have. From a general position that requires a degree to positions related to the biggest niche, such as rocket scientist. LinkedIn is a living database that is constantly updated by the users themselves. But more than that, it has become a platform that attracts both active and passive candidates as it encourages engagement with brands, current colleagues, and former employees. LinkedIn has managed to establish itself not only as a job exchange, but also as a real social media recruiting platform.

Due to the sheer number and breadth of both active job seekers and passive professionals who cavort on the platform, LinkedIn is far from providing its services for free. Recruiters who try to contact or add potential candidates in large numbers are quickly referred to a LinkedIn Recruiter account (or very quickly unable to send further contact requests). The LinkedIn Recruiter Lite account allows you to use these features for about $ 119.99 per month.

Note that as early as 2015, 92% of recruiters were using LinkedIn. Since then, LinkedIn has grown in popularity, especially among professional talent scouts, alongside social recruiting. The number of potential candidates is enormous, but a corresponding number of recruiters makes the platform competitive when it comes to specific skills.

Developing a strong employer branding through both LinkedIn and other communication channels is an excellent way to stand out from the crowd. Additionally, you can consider tweaking your job descriptions to attract attention and interest users on LinkedIn. When it comes to presenting yourself as a great employer with great opportunities, it pays to invest more time and effort on LinkedIn as it can make a big difference.


In addition to LinkedIn, Facebook has proven to be a powerful platform in the area of ​​social recruiting. At the beginning of 2018, Facebook had 2.23 billion active users, making it one of the most popular social media channels in the world. Undoubtedly, among these billions of users, there will be both active and passive candidates who are open to vacancies.

Since Facebook is primarily a social platform compared to the career-oriented platform LinkedIn, it may appear unsuitable for social media recruiting at first glance. But just like LinkedIn, Facebook's search capabilities are very powerful at identifying people based on the information they openly share on the network. The free messaging feature on this platform also provides a competitive advantage over LinkedIn.

If you want to take full advantage of social recruiting via Facebook, you should identify the professional or career-oriented groups that your target candidates might belong to. These will help you focus your search. In addition to using Facebook jobs, these groups also offer a good opportunity to share relevant job offers from your company.

Top tip: As already mentioned, it can be uncomfortable to address candidates via Facebook. When you've found interesting applicants who are interested in your posts, you could see if they have a corresponding profile on LinkedIn. If the profiles go well together, you can send them a custom message with your LinkedIn invitation.


Xing is the German-speaking cousin of LinkedIn. With over 90% of users in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, Xing is the driving force behind the DACH region when it comes to job seekers. The profiles of the talented applicants on Xing provide an overview of skills and experience, which makes the search functions on the platform very efficient.

From a social recruiting perspective, however, Xing is a much more sophisticated platform than LinkedIn. Users are less engaged here (as there is less social functionality), which leads to delays in responses from potential candidates. In addition, the social norms for approaching candidates are much stricter, which makes it difficult to get in touch with passive candidates on this platform. If you are not specifically looking for German-speaking candidates or skilled workers who are currently based in Germany, you may find that you better spend your time looking for staff on other social platforms.


Another platform based on purely social interaction seems like another unusual choice for recruiting. However, Twitter is a popular social media recruiting platform for potential candidates to search for companies and possible vacancies. 74% of jobseeking Twitter users review company profiles and investigate their activities, posts and engagement.

Once you've created a Twitter profile for your company on careers, make sure you are following users and studying hashtags related to your industry to improve your social recruiting tactics. Using popular (and relevant) hashtags to increase your chances will help grow your audience and increase the number of interactions with your career site. Remember to make sure the careers page on your own website reflects the tone and brand you are promoting on Twitter.


Another uncommon candidate for social recruiting is Quora, a great platform to find out about current topics in your target industry. Why shouldn't you want to take part in current topic discussions? Often experts or specialists will answer the questions.

While Quora users will primarily be passive candidates, many of them will answer questions on industry-specific trending topics, be very committed and often be informed about special topics. Quora is a platform that you can use to compare users with LinkedIn. While Quora is still the most popular in the United States, it can be helpful to follow current topics in your candidate's industries to enable targeted reach on other social recruiting platforms.


Among recruiters who specialize in, or often seek out, tech development candidates, GitHub is a legendary source for social recruiting. GitHub is an open source coding platform where developers show their best work and contribute to important projects in teams. Profiles are publicly accessible, and the search function allows you to search for programming languages, location and followers.

GitHub is a special platform that is carefully maintained by its users. Make sure that you adhere to the social norms on this platform. Copy and paste messages are frowned upon and poor research into potential candidates is answered with angry messages or radio silence. Reviewing individual sources or portfolios of programming may seem time-consuming, but it will help enable targeted search and hopefully lead to better responses to your social media recruiting efforts.

Stack overflow

Stack Overflow is another social recruiting hotspot for developers. Like Quora, Stack Overflow is a question and answer page designed specifically for technical topics. If you're often looking for skilled developers who are obviously smart enough to answer community questions, social recruiting on Stack Overflow can be a good tactic in your recruiting process.

Stack Overflow now offers a Talent Account that you can use to post vacancies, search applicant profiles, and create a company page. This specialized network comes at a high cost, however, as annual offerings start at over $ 3,000.


As a social platform where individuals schedule meetings for social and professional interest groups, Meetup can be a great platform to expand your social recruiting repertoire. Meetup is very easy to use. The organizers create groups that hold meetings. There is a group chat function for each group and event, with which participants and organizers can exchange information or comments on the topic.

To take advantage of Meetup, join local professional groups in your area or even areas where you may be looking for candidates. When looking for marketers, check out marketing events or groups in your area. Meetup is a great way to get your social media recruiting up and running again by attending events. In addition, you can search the names of the event participants in order to compare them with LinkedIn, or even publish your vacancies on the corresponding pin boards of the groups / events. However, you should perhaps clarify this with the organizers first!


If you're looking for passionate professionals, Medium is a great social recruiting resource that you should definitely try out. Medium is a platform on which authors from different backgrounds can exchange stories, experiences and new topics or events. The range of topics covered by Medium is broad, and the experts can shine with their unique perspectives. Whether you are looking for legal advice or a designer, Medium can be a great place. Here you can find people who are passionate about what they do.

As soon as you have found potential candidates, you can send them a targeted contact via the communication channel of your choice to usher in the next phase of your social recruiting.


Predict communication channels with the best performance

Social platforms offer a great opportunity for recruiters not only to find candidates, but also to connect with them. Fear of losing applicants can make some feel like they need to use all communication channels and be present on all communication channels. However, this is not the way to go. Instead, you should review which social media recruiting platforms are best for your company.

A detailed applicant source analysis can be a very helpful way to determine how best to invest your time. When importing candidate profiles from different channels (with the candidate's consent, of course), you should keep an eye on the platform on which you originally addressed them. This way, when you query your reports, you can see which communication channels have been most successful for your recruiting strategy.


Adrie Smith

Head of Content and Branding

Adrie is a former recruiter and Recruitee's Head of Content & Branding. With a passion for hiring and tech, she is responsible for all the awesome stuff that gets published on this blog. You'll see her on the Recruitee webinar, podcast, and even on stage at #TalentCon.